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January 23, 2014 3

Ron Unz: Controversial Writer And Funder Of Anti-Israel Activists

ron-unz-extremism

Ron Unz

Con­ser­v­a­tive busi­ness­man Ron Unz has stirred con­tro­versy over the last year by pub­li­ciz­ing ideas that appeal to anti-Semites, offer­ing a forum for writ­ers who demo­nize Israel, and fund­ing sev­eral anti-Israel activists, some of whom pro­mote anti-Semitic canards. Though Unz does not appear to be an anti-Semite, he pro­vides sup­port to extreme anti-Israel ide­o­logues and his writ­ings res­onate with and are reg­u­larly cited by anti-Semites.

In Novem­ber 2013, Unz cre­ated a webzine called The Unz Review that addresses con­tro­ver­sial polit­i­cal and racial top­ics because he believes the main­stream media ignore or con­ceal cer­tain infor­ma­tion and ideas.  Although Unz claims that he does not agree with many of the views pre­sented in the webzine, he nonethe­less has pro­vided a new out­let for cer­tain writ­ers to attack Israel and Jews.

The Unz Review emerged a year after Unz pub­lished a con­tro­ver­sial arti­cle “The Myth of Amer­i­can Mer­i­toc­racy,” in The Amer­i­can Con­ser­v­a­tive in which he claims that Jews are over­rep­re­sented at elite schools even though their achieve­ment lev­els have been in a down­ward spi­ral. He also claims these schools dis­crim­i­nate against better-qualified Asian-Americans and non-Jewish whites who rep­re­sent a greater per­cent­age of the population.

Unz pos­tu­lates that one rea­son that Jews are more read­ily admit­ted to Ivy League schools is that a large per­cent­age of the schools’ admin­is­tra­tors are Jew­ish and are more apt to admit Jews based on “uncon­scious biases.” Most dis­turbingly, Unz implies that Jews are an alien pres­ence in the United States com­pared to White Anglo Sax­ons who dom­i­nated elite schools in the past.

As might be expected, anti-Semites have latched onto Unz’s work to affirm their own views. In par­tic­u­lar Kevin Mac­Don­ald, an anti-Semitic pro­fes­sor of evo­lu­tion­ary psy­chol­ogy at Cal­i­for­nia State Uni­ver­sity, Long Beach, and anti-Semite David Duke both assert that Unz’s work shows that Jews in power dis­crim­i­nate against white European-Americans.

Unz is involved in other endeav­ors that raise ques­tions about his views of Jews and Israel. He funds a num­ber of extreme anti-Israel ide­o­logues through the Unz Foun­da­tion includ­ing Paul Craig Roberts, an anti-Semitic syn­di­cated colum­nist;  Mon­doweiss, an anti-Israel blog run by Philip Weiss; and Philip Giraldi, the Exec­u­tive Direc­tor of the Coun­cil for the National Inter­est, an anti-Israel group based in Wash­ing­ton, D.C.

For full arti­cle, see “Ron Unz: Con­tro­ver­sial Writer and Fun­der of Anti-Israel Ide­o­logues.”

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May 3, 2013 2

Alison Weir Laments On “Jewish Power” To Anti-Semitic Newspaper

Ali­son Weir, the direc­tor of two orga­ni­za­tions that try to steer pub­lic sup­port away from Israel and traf­fic in con­spir­acy the­o­ries about the Jew­ish state, gave an inter­view ear­lier this week lament­ing the allegedly all-powerful “Israel lobby.”alison-weir-american-free-press-podcast

Weir’s inter­view was with the Amer­i­can Free Press (AFP), a Wash­ing­ton, DC-based conspiracy-oriented anti-Semitic news­pa­per pub­lished by long-time anti-Semite Willis Carto.

Dur­ing the pod­cast inter­view, titled “AIPAC Slaps Amer­ica in the Face, Again,” Weir claimed that the “Israel lobby” is pres­sur­ing Con­gress not to reduce for­eign aid to Israel despite seques­tra­tion and seem­ingly is uncon­cerned with the fact that the money could oth­er­wise be spent on domes­tic projects that would ben­e­fit Amer­i­cans. She alleged that the lobby sup­presses any oppo­si­tion to Israel, Zion­ism or “Jew­ish power.”

Her inter­viewer, Dave Gahary, read­ily agreed with her, call­ing her analy­sis “ter­rific” and reit­er­at­ing that there is strong evi­dence of “Jew­ish power.” He pointed to Jews’ “con­trol” of Hol­ly­wood and Weir agreed, say­ing that it’s an “inside joke” in LA that Jews con­trol Hol­ly­wood. She also defended Helen Thomas’s anti-Semitic remarks and claimed that Jewish-Americans are “very pow­er­ful in pol­i­tics.” Weir even reflected that she was uncom­fort­able her­self talk­ing about the sub­ject in a pub­lic broad­cast because it is “taboo.”

At one point dur­ing the inter­view, Gahary rhetor­i­cally asked “why should we have to hide dis­cus­sions about Jews or Jew­ish power? We shouldn’t. We should be able to say what­ever we want.” Weir agreed, assert­ing that even when peo­ple apol­o­gize for mak­ing anti-Semitic com­ments, their apolo­gies are some­times deemed insuf­fi­cient and they have to “grovel and grovel and grovel.”

It is not the first time that anti-Israel ide­o­logues have appeared on Amer­i­can Free Press. In August 2012, Rebecca Vilkomer­son, the Exec­u­tive Direc­tor of Jew­ish Voice for Peace, was inter­viewed by AFP to pro­mote JVP and the group’s boy­cott cam­paign against Israel. The par­ents of Rachel Cor­rie, a young activist who was killed while protest­ing Israeli pol­icy in Gaza, and Yis­roel Dovid Weiss, the spokesper­son for the ultra-Orthodox anti-Zionist group Neturei Karta, have also been inter­viewed by AFP in recent years.

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March 8, 2013 1

Anti-Israel Activity Reached Fever Pitch This Week

Anti-Israel activists took a multi-faceted approach to attack­ing Israel in the pub­lic sphere this week. In the span of 7 days, divest­ment res­o­lu­tions were con­sid­ered at three col­lege cam­puses, ten anti-Israel bill­boards were put up in Atlanta, over 30 col­lege cam­puses hosted Israeli Apartheid Week pro­grams and two day­long BDS con­fer­ences were scheduled.

These ini­tia­tives are for­mally or infor­mally part of a global effort to advance the Boy­cott, Divest­ment and Sanc­tions (BDS) move­ment against Israel. They demon­strate the anti-Israel movement’s com­mit­ment to employ­ing mul­ti­ple tac­tics and cam­paigns to attract sup­port for its positions.

A flyer adver­tis­ing the first pub­lic dis­cus­sion on the divest­ment res­o­lu­tion at UCSD

Here’s a closer look at what’s taken place this week:

  • Cam­pus Divest­ment Res­o­lu­tions: Stu­dent gov­ern­ments at Stan­ford Uni­ver­sity, the Uni­ver­sity of Cal­i­for­nia (UC), River­side, and UC San Diego con­sid­ered divest­ment res­o­lu­tions tar­get­ing multi­na­tional com­pa­nies that work with Israel like Cater­pil­lar, Gen­eral Elec­tric and Northrup Grum­man. The results were mixed: the res­o­lu­tion at Stan­ford was voted down; UC San Diego did not vote on its res­o­lu­tion (after a dis­cus­sion that lasted until 2am) and will resume dis­cussing it next week, while UC River­side passed its res­o­lu­tion in a stealth man­ner rem­i­nis­cent of the recent res­o­lu­tion at UC Irvine. The divest­ment res­o­lu­tion at River­side was intro­duced with­out advance notice and seems to be part of an effort to ensure that pro-Israel stu­dents are left in the dark and are there­fore not present at the pub­lic dis­cus­sion to voice their per­spec­tive and advo­cate against the bill.
  • Israeli Apartheid Week: At least 35 col­lege cam­puses in the U.S. are par­tic­i­pat­ing in IAW this year, the ninth con­sec­u­tive year that the pro­gram has been held in cities around the world. Most of the events in the U.S. were for­mally sched­uled to take place March 4–8 but some are stretch­ing into next week as well (due to var­i­ous university-related sched­ul­ing con­flicts). IAW events this year have pri­mar­ily included anti-Israel speak­ers, mock “apartheid walls” and check­point dis­plays on cam­pus, and screen­ings of two crit­i­cal of Israel films,  the Oscar award-nominated “5 Bro­ken Cam­eras” and a more extreme film called “Roadmap to Apartheid.” “Roadmap to Apartheid” is nar­rated by The Color Pur­ple author Alice Walker and analo­gizes Pales­tin­ian refugees to Jews in the War­saw Ghetto and par­tially con­dones ter­ror­ism as a “symp­tom” of the conflict.
  • BDS Con­fer­ences: This past Sat­ur­day the Uni­ver­sity of Texas, Austin, hosted a day­long “BDS Con­fer­ence” that fea­tured extreme speeches by Nada Elia, a fac­ulty mem­ber at Anti­och Uni­ver­sity in Seat­tle, and Sherry Wolf, a Jew­ish social­ist and activist. Elia avowed that she would not reject Pales­tin­ian extrem­ism because Pales­tini­ans “have a right to resist” and com­pared Israelis to Amer­i­can slave-owners. Wolf used the plat­form to claim that the notion that Israel is the Jew­ish people’s home­land is “bulls–t” and accused Israel of “ter­ror­ism” and insti­tu­tion­al­ized racism against the Pales­tini­ans. She fur­ther described Zion­ist Jews as “white suprema­cist racist[s].” On Sat­ur­day, March 9, a sim­i­lar con­fer­ence will take place on the Auraria cam­pus in Den­ver. Par­tic­i­pants will “learn about the his­tory of both Pales­tine and the global BDS move­ment, hear what coali­tion groups are work­ing on, and par­tic­i­pate in BDS and coalition-building train­ing,” accord­ing to the event flier.
  • Anti-Israel Bill­boards: The Coun­cil for the National Inter­est, an anti-U.S. aid to Israel group based in DC, recently started a cam­paign called “Stop the Blank Check to Israel” which hopes to place bill­boards in cities across the coun­try. Ten such ads, which read, “$8 Mil­lion a day to Israel just doesn’t make sense! STOP The Blank Check.org,” have recently been erected in Atlanta. Ads with sim­i­lar mes­sages have appeared in the past year in Den­ver, Detroit, Los Ange­les, Chapel Hill and New York.

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